Faux (pronounced Fo) finishing is a technique that uses paint to simulate various finishes, such as textured stone, lime washing, linen weave, crackle paste, distressed leather and more. Attractive it may be, but durable it is not. In fact, one paint manufacturer actually states in their brochure that the finished faux surface must be protected by painting with the color of your choice. Beyond that, damaged areas are virtually impossible to patch invisibly. Now, there’s nothing wrong with using a faux finish. Many people do, never have a problem with it and are very happy with the results.
But just be aware of it’s limitations.
These options may be beyond the reach of the casual D-I-Yer, but they deserve to be mentioned. Behr produces an item called Venetian Plaster. It’s a thick paint designed to be troweled onto the wall and ceiling surfaces. By the time you’re finished, you?ll have a surface that?ll look for all the world like an original plastered wall. Somewhat more expensive than regular paint, as well as time-consuming to apply, this type of finish gives beautiful results that you can be proud of, but you?ll certainly work to get it.
Last but absolutely not least is clay plaster. Offered by American Clay and several other companies, it’s exactly what it says it is, an earth plaster. This product has to be mixed with water to a pudding consistency and then two coats troweled onto wall and ceiling surfaces. Since it’s made from clay and aggregates, it qualifies as a ?green? building material. It also breathes and does not need to be sealed except in high moisture areas. Since the sealer does not alter the color appreciably, it can be used in bathrooms without a problem. Best of all, any damage it sustains over time is easily repaired and the repair will be completely invisible if you exert just a little effort.
Compared to the other options mentioned, clay plaster is expensive. It’s also time-consuming and physically tiring to apply, especially when you consider that you’re mixing fifty pound bags of product at a time. In spite of all this, the end result makes the cost and all your effort worthwhile. At this time, no other product can match the warm earth atmosphere of clay plaster.